Serengeti National Park
Lion on kopje scanning the plains for prey in Serengeti
Wildebeest attempting to cross the Grumeti River in
Serengeti National Park
Sundowner in the open in Serengeti National Park
The Serengeti has the biggest collection of plains animals
anywhere in the world. You will see scenes of grazing nearly
everywhere you go. A typical view from the window of your safari
vehicle or while standing up from the inside of your safari
vehicle might be a harem of Impalas while a herd of Thompsons
Gazelles pass by. Littering the background; lions on a rock
kopje in the Serengeti. In Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
will be Zebras, Wildebeest, and a few Cape Buffalo. If the area
is wooded there will be Giraffes and Elephants.
Tanzania's oldest and most popular national park, the Serengeti
National Park is famed for its annual migration, when some six million hooves
pound the open plains, as more than 200,000 zebra and 300,000
Thomson's gazelle join the wildebeest’s trek for fresh grazing.
Yet even when the migration is quiet, the Serengeti offers
arguably the most scintillating game-viewing in Africa: great
herds of buffalo, smaller groups of elephant and giraffe, and
thousands upon thousands of eland, topi, Kongoni, impala and
The spectacle of predator versus prey dominates Tanzania’s
greatest park. Golden-manned lion prides feast on the abundance
of plain grazers. Solitary leopards haunt the acacia trees
lining the Seronera River, while a high density of cheetahs
prowls the southeastern plains. Almost uniquely, all three
African jackal species occur here, alongside the spotted hyena
and a host of more elusive small predators, ranging from the
insectivorous aardwolf to the beautiful serval cat.
But there is more to Serengeti than large mammals. Gaudy agama
lizards and rock hyraxes scuffle around the surfaces of the
park’s isolated granite kopjes. A full 100 varieties of dung
beetle have been recorded, as have 500-plus bird species,
ranging from the outsized ostrich and bizarre secretary bird of
the open grassland, to the black eagles that soar effortlessly
above the Lobo Hills.
As enduring as the game-viewing is the liberating sense of space
that characterizes the Serengeti Plains, stretching across
sun-burnt savannah to a shimmering golden horizon at the end of
the earth. Yet, after the rains, this golden expanse of grass is
transformed into an endless green carpet flecked with
wildflowers. In addition, there are wooded hills and towering
termite mounds, rivers lined with fig trees and acacia woodland
stained orange by dust.
Popular the Serengeti might be, but it remains so vast that you
may be the only human audience when a pride of lions masterminds
a siege, focused unswervingly on its next meal.